12 July 2022

It's official: Canberra's favourite cat name is out of the bag

| James Coleman
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Chances are it’s a Charlie. Photo: File.

As of 1 July, all new cats in the ACT must be registered.

This is to ensure Canberra’s felines live happily ever after. It’s like the Find my Phone feature, too – you can more easily be reunited if Tabby is found wandering the streets.

It also means we get to learn what everyone decides to name their cats, even if we don’t always know what was going through the owner’s head at the time.

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Since cat registration came into effect across the ACT, more than 5500 cats have been registered, enough for some clear trends to emerge in the naming department.

Food and famous characters are up there, as well as some other ‘unique’ cat puns.

Charlie means many things to many people, but it is officially Canberra’s most popular cat name. Safe, if a little unimaginative.

The others in the top ten list are short and catchy, and because it’s Australia, they end in ‘o’, ‘a’, or ‘y’. Think Bella (we can probably thank Twilight for this one), Coco, Missy and Rosie.

For some reason, various food items also come to mind when people look at their cats. Bacon, Bagel, Chorizo, Gnocchi, Cous Cous and even Mash Potato were on the menu.

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As always, there are celebrity and movie names to have pun with.

Canberra delivered, with Mr Kat Dashian, Fidel Catstro, Genghis Khat and Leonardo DiCatmeow.

Others were deemed worthy of honourable mention, clearly because they prompted a smirk as they passed over the government desk, such as Chairman Meow and Sheldon Sir Bottomwimple.

Others appear to have been named by every member of the family all at once. How else does Princess Willow Dixie Bell Thunder Paw Marshmallow happen?

Top 10 most popular cat names (so far):

  1. Charlie.
  2. Luna.
  3. Bella.
  4. Coco.
  5. Leo.
  6. Missy.
  7. Lily.
  8. Rosie.
  9. Mia.
  10. Lucy.

Food names:

  • Bacon
  • Bagel
  • Biscuit
  • Cappuccino
  • Chorizo
  • Coriander
  • Cous Cous
  • Crumpet
  • Gnocchi
  • Halloumi
  • Jelly Bean
  • Lamington
  • Mash Potato.

Celebrity names:

  • 50 Cent
  • Astro Boy
  • Braveheart
  • Beethoven
  • Catrick Swayze
  • Chewbacca
  • Mr Kat Dashian
  • Fidel Catstro
  • Genghis Khat
  • George Lucat
  • Jabberwocky
  • Lady Lucinda Meowkenzie
  • Leonardo DiCatmeow
  • Sir Paw McCatney
  • Snoop Dogg
  • Yogi Bear Chocolate Button
  • Toothless.

And just because:

  • Artificial Lunar Conspiracy
  • Autumn aka Get Off That!
  • Boatswain Moon
  • Catzgonewild George Weasley Otis
  • Chairman Meow
  • El’Sprite Tenacity Olive Tiger Lily
  • Fizzypop
  • Frieda Fuzzypaws
  • Kapitan Floof
  • Luna Valkyrie Moon Clown
  • Miss Kitty Fantastico
  • Princess Willow Dixie Bell Thunder Paw Marshmallow
  • Romi Princess Sass Sooky La La Hissy Pants
  • Sheldon Sir Bottomwimple.

All Charlies in the ACT must be registered via an online form with details to be updated annually.

Cats born before 1 July 2022 can be registered for free until 1 July 2023. These cats also do not have to be contained unless they live in one of the 17 currently declared cat containment suburbs.

For those born from 1 July 2022, registration costs a one-off fee of $57.55 or $20.70 for concession card holders. The details must be updated every year at no extra cost. Cat containment applies ACT-wide for these cats, meaning they must also be kept on your property unless they are on a leash.

More information on cat registration and containment can be found on the City Services website.

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